Cleco Power and Macquarie have closed on the leveraged buyout (LBO) transaction despite the April 28th rehearing. The Alliance for Affordable Energy has issued a press release in regards to this irresponsible action. Click on the link below to access the full press release.
April 7, 2016
Make your opinion heard! Letters to the Editor are a great way to express your thoughts about the LPSC and their recent decisions. To save you time we have compiled a list of guidelines for submitting letters to the editor for various Louisiana newspapers. We encourage you to write letters to the editor of your local newspaper.
Last month, on March 28th during a Special Session and subsequent rehearing the Louisiana Public Service Commission voted 4-1 to approve the sale of Cleco Power to Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets. We are disappointed with the Public Service Commission’s decision. The Alliance for Affordable Energy has issued a press release calling for the Commission to solicit new ratings from credit agencies. This is a matter of due diligence. Please find the full press release below.
March 16, 2016
Last month, the Louisiana Public Service Commission heard you loud and clear: Keep Cleco Local and protect Louisiana customers. The LPSC unanimously rejected the takeover deal offered by a group of foreign investors, saying the takeover was NOT in the public interest.
Now, Macquarie and the other investors are back with a “new deal,” offering a re-structured package, hoping to appeal to the commissioners and customers.
The problem is, this is the same bad deal, with different window dressing. The risks are still there, Macquarie still plans to leave in 8-10 years, and, the prospective buyers won’t do the deal without the risky leveraged buyout scheme.
We want to be sure the Commission continues to uphold their decision at this month’s meeting, now scheduled for next Tuesday, March 22.
If you want to protect your community, call your Commissioner and ask him to uphold the decision to reject this deal.
Cleco Power, the oldest of Louisiana’s major electric utility companies, is the target of a private equity takeover bid by a group of foreign own investment funds. The offer is a bad deal for Louisiana, as it leverages an enormous amount of debt for the takeover, allows executives and shareholders to walk away with millions, and leaves customers to pay down the debt.
We are intervening at the Louisiana Public Service Commission, the regulator who will decide if the sale is allowed to go through. We are submitting testimony and have developed reports on the deal in order to educate consumers.
Cleco Sale Denied: February 24, 2016
On Feburary 24th, the Louisiana Public Service Commission, by a unanimous decision denied the sale of Cleco Corporation to a private investment consortium, led by Macquarie. After a 6 1/2 hour meeting, featuring questions from the commissioners to the applicants, intervenors, commission staff, consultants, and comments from the community, the decision was made following an unopposed motion made by Commissioner Clyde Holloway to reject the sale.
Thank you to everyone who contacted their commissioners, wrote letters, and joined us in protecting the Cleco Community.
On February 16, 2016, Commissioner Clyde Holloway has issued a letter to his constituents regarding his misgivings about the sale, including a tax avoidance scheme, and double leveraging the company. Commissioner Holloway’s letter lays open the largest problems with the deal, and shows that elected officials are listening to the citizens who elected them. Take a look at the Commissioner Holloway Letter.
An Administrative Law Judge is tasked with making legal recommendations regarding the takeover to the Commissioners before their vote.
On February 17, 2016, the Administrative Law Judge issued her recommendation: “that the transaction, as currently structured, is not in the public interest.”
See her full recommendation HERE.
We are in the final days of decision-making on this deal, and everyone (the judge, the commission’s staff, and all interested parties) have said it isn’t in the public interest.
In November, Macquarie and Cleco asked that Judge to keep parts of the proceeding a secret. These pieces of “confidential” information bears DIRECTLY on the financial health of the company and public interest. We are very happy to report that the judge stated that Macquarie and Cleco “should not be allowed to hide [the matters at issue] from disclosure.”
Administrative Law Judge: READ THE CONFIDENTIALITY RULING HERE
Cleco and Macquarie appealed the Judge’s ruling and fought to keep important details of the sale from the public. Read our press release about it HERE.
The Friday before the Monday February 1st LPSC meeting, when Commissioners were expected to adopt the judge’s ruling the Takeover Team at Macquarie and Cleco withdrew their motion to keep “certain” parts of the proceedings confidential.
Here is some info we can now share with you, and you can read our press release about it HERE.
The Commissioners have staff and consultants who get into the nitty gritty of rates and policies and make policy recommendations. Staff has made it clear in their most recent filings that the “commitments” offered by the Takeover Team aren’t enough to protect customers from the risks this buyout would heap onto the company.
Read the comments and tell your commissioner to REJECT the deal!Public Service Commission Staff Comments: READ THE STAFF’S COMMENTS HERE
CONTACT YOUR COMMISSIONER:
Follow THIS LINK to find your commissioner’s contact info and call them to tell them to protect Louisiana and REJECT this deal.
We have started a petition at change.org to help coordinate residents who are concerned about the takeover. If you want to let your commissioner know you are worried, please go HERE to sign your name. Share the petition with your family and friends!
Follow us at the Our Cleco, Our Community Facebook page to stay in touch, and check back here for updates.
Print this two page flyer to share important information with your friends or family.
THE ISSUES COMPARED SIDE BY SIDE:
Take a look at this SideXSide comparison of Cleco and Macquarie’s talking points and the truth.
The Alliance is holding meetings to give residents an opportunity to ask questions and get involved in the campaign to stop this risky deal.Contact us if you’d like to host an informational session. We will supply you and your community with the facts on this unfair deal.
Louisiana Public Service Commission, Business and Executive Meeting 602 North Fifth Street, Baton Rouge, LA 70802 Wednesday, February 24, 10 AM.
965 San Antonio Ave
Many, Louisiana 71448
Thursday February 18
Central Louisiana Business Incubator
1501 Wimbledon Boulevard
Wed, Oct 21 at 12pm
Madisonville Town Hall
403 St. Francis Street
Wed, Oct 21 at 12pm